Humanity prevails, no matter our age, and this is why we are excited to celebrate Join Hands Day, every first Saturday in May, on May 4 this year. Old and new generations are often at ends with each other. The older generations believe that the newer ones are lazy and rebellious, while the newer generations are of the view that their predecessors are too uptight and have outdated mentalities. This stark difference recently became emphasized when the meme, “Ok, boomer,” started trending, whereby younger generations would say the phrase to older generations in response to the latter’s constant nagging. However, the fabric of society is made and maintained through the two generations’ unity and understanding. This is the very reason that Join Hands Day was created — to bring people together, no matter their age, for volunteering services.
History of Join Hands Day
The first Join Hands Day was celebrated in 2000. The day, which is always celebrated on the first Saturday of May, was inaugurated by the American Fraternal Alliance (1886) in partnership with the Points of Light foundation (1990). Both the organizations are nonprofit and aim to bring people and other organizations together from all over the world for the betterment of society at large. The main aim of the day is to unite old and new generations to come together for volunteering services. Initially, people could register their volunteering events on the Join Hands Day website to acquire recognition and publicity. However, more recently the organizing committees encourage people to individually hold the events and volunteering services.
Today, Join Hands Day is managed by Assured Life Association, another fraternal benefit society. Apart from providing volunteering services to the community, Join Hands Day also provides a platform for the different generations to come together and just talk. It may just happen that one generation learns something new from the other one. Furthermore, shared experiences and similar likes/dislikes cement the bonds of the two generations that have often regarded the other one as the ‘enemy’. Therefore, not only is Join Hands Day good for those who are less fortunate, but it is also a great initiative to mitigate any bitterness between the two generations.
Join Hands Day timeline
A meeting of 16 fraternal orders results in the formation of NFC, which is the modern-day American Fraternal Alliance.
After not being satisfied with the NFC’s internal/external workings, many fraternal orders come together to form the Associated Fraternities of America.
The American Fraternal Alliance’s Benefit Societies and Points of Light foundation create the first Join Hands Day.
While Join Hands Day is always celebrated in May, during 2001, it is celebrated on June 16 instead.
Join Hands Day FAQs
What skills are needed for volunteering?
Commitment and dedication! If you are dedicated to the cause, you will make for a valued and needed volunteer.
What is the age gap between generations?
“Baby Boomers: Baby boomers were born 1981 and 1994/6. They’re currently between 57-75 years old (71.6 million in the U.S.) Gen X: Gen X was born between 1965 and 1979/80 and is currently between 41-56 years old (65.2 million people in the U.S.) Gen Y: Gen Y, or Millennials, were born between 1981 and 1994/6,” according to Kasasa.
What volunteering means?
Volunteering is any activity that involves spending time, unpaid, doing something that aims to benefit the environment or someone (individuals or groups) other than, or in addition to, close relatives. It often means no pay for the time and effort you invest in it because, of course, if you are volunteering and getting paid for it, does it really count as volunteering?
How to Observe Join Hands Day
Offer your volunteering services
Search for volunteering services near you and reach out to help. To make the aim of the day count, try and reach out to the older generation in your life to see if they would be willing to join you. Make memories of the day whilst doing your part for society.
Organize an event
If there’s no volunteering event happening around you or you would like to volunteer for something near and dear to you, organize it yourself. Make it an objective of your event to pair your volunteers up with a person from a different generation.
One of the ways to observe the day is by spreading awareness about it. Use social media and/or talk to your loved ones about it. The more people come to know about this day, the better.
5 Facts About Volunteer Services That Will Blow Your Mind
Volunteering helps mental health
Almost 47% of volunteers report that volunteering has helped improve their mental health, especially those suffering from depression.
Touring and volunteering together
A 2008 study by Tourism and Research Marketing found that 1.6 million people volunteered in a place where they would have to travel as a tourist in order to provide their services.
Women volunteers during the Civil War
During the American Civil War, women volunteered by sewing supplies for men.
Volunteering helping with jobs
Usually, people aged 18 to 24 believe that volunteering helps provide them with better job opportunities that they would have otherwise missed.
Volunteering improves social skills
If you struggle in a social situation, volunteering can help you fix that as you will be providing help and interacting with people while on the job.
Why Join Hands Day is Important
It’s a celebration of volunteering services
Volunteering helps a community to become a better place to live for all. From providing food, shelter, clothes, etc., to volunteering one’s time in teaching someone a much-needed skill for free, volunteering is a celebration of our humanity.
It’s a celebration of old and new generations
The main aim of the day is to bring people of different generations together. Differences between humans will always be there. But we need to find the correct balance and meet each other in the middle for a better world and life
It’s a celebration of humanity’s unity
Our strength as a species lies in our unity. As long as we are united, we can be sure to achieve new heights by overcoming any and all difficulties. Our shared experiences and perspectives will help usher in new and better eras.
Join Hands Day dates